Apr 15, 2024  
2020-2021 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 2 
2020-2021 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 2 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing Practice (DNP)

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The mission of the DNP program is to prepare advanced practice nurse leaders and clinicians, who are experts in evidence-based practice to provide the highest quality health care for patients, families, communities, and populations.

The DNP core courses are designed to be delivered in four consecutive quarters of full-time enrollment with a part-time option available. The total credits hours for the DNP program varies by concentration. Didactic courses are completed via an asynchronous online format using the learning management system Canvas in order to provide a quality, rigorous, and yet flexible learning experience for a diverse student body.  Online didactic courses are supplemented by lecture presentations prepared and delivered by clinicians, researchers, and academicians in the nursing profession today.  Faculty incorporate interactive online learning activities including, but not limited to, required readings, asynchronous forum-based discussions, synchronous online patient case discussions, online quizzes and exams, and evidence-based reviews to develop critical thinking/reasoning and professional communication with peers and faculty.

Students have access to optional laboratory immersions on-ground at South College and complete their clinical preceptorships at various approved facilities within their home state and/or other states as required by the various specialties.

Graduates completing the Doctor of Nursing Practice program will accomplish the following outcomes:

DNP Program Outcome 

AACN DNP Essentials 

1. Synthesize scientific evidence and methods to design, direct, and evaluate strategies to promote and provide effective patient-centered care. 

AACN: Essential I, III 

2. Incorporate leadership skills and interprofessional team building strategies to improve quality metrics within healthcare systems, organizations, and diverse practice settings. 

AACN: Essential II 

3. Employ information systems and technology in the delivery of transformative healthcare. 

AACN: Essential IV 

4. Advocate for evidence-based health policy to improve local, national, and/or global patient and health population outcomes. 

AACN: Essential V 

5. Utilize effective interprofessional communication and collaborative skills to facilitate improvement in population health. 

AACN: Essential VI 

6. Apply advanced levels of clinical judgment and systems thinking in designing, delivering, and evaluating evidence-based care for clinical treatment, clinical prevention, and improvement of population health. 

AACN: Essential VII, VIII 


Applicants to the South College Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program must provide the following:

  1. Completed South College application for admission;
  2. Completed admission application to the Doctor of Nursing Practice program; and
  3. Official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate work completed.

Applicants must meet the following requirements to be admitted to the program:

  1. Proof of a current unencumbered Registered Nurse license or in progress of becoming licensed as a Registered Nurse as verified by Nursys (https://www.nursys.com) or licensure verification system provided by individual State Board of Nursing;
  2. Evidence of completion of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from an accredited institution of higher education (conditional admission may be granted if completion is projected prior to the beginning of the first DNP course);
  3. Evidence of a cumulative 3.0 grade point average for undergraduate nursing courses;
  4. Accepted Background Check and Drug Screen and;
  5. Each Specialty may have additional requirements.
    • Additional Requirements for Concentration in Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
      • Minimum of three recommendations from healthcare professionals who can rate the applicant’s academic and professional potential.
      • A two-page typed personal statement of professional goals and objectives.
      • A statement of understanding of the FNP practicum requirements.
      • Identification of potential clinical sites and preceptors for the FNP practicum requirements.
      • Minimum of 2000 hours of nursing work experience employed as a registered nurse.


Registered nurses must be licensed by the state in which they intend to practice. Licensure laws and regulations vary from state to state. In order to be admitted to the South College Master of Science in Nursing program, applicants must provide evidence of a current unencumbered Registered Nurse license or in progress of becoming licensed as a Registered Nurse as verified by Nursys (https://www.nursys.com) or licensure verification system provided by individual State Boards of Nursing.  

Nurses may seek Nurse Executive board certification from The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or The American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL).  Requirements for certification include varying combinations of requirements depending upon the certification sought but generally include requirement to hold a current RN license, minimum educational level in nursing, specified time/hours of experience in nursing management/supervision, and continuing education credits if a master’s degree has not been earned. 

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) have developed nationally recognized competencies for the educational preparation of advanced practice nurses. The respective board certification examinations are competency-based examinations that provide a valid and reliable assessment of the entry-level clinical knowledge and skills for nurse practitioners. Certification aligns with the Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification, and Education. Once exam-takers complete eligibility requirements to take the certification examination and successfully pass the exam, they will be awarded a nationally recognized credential, which can be maintained by continuous licensure and satisfying the specific renewal requirements in place at the time of certification renewal. The National Commission for Certifying Agencies and the Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification accredits this certification. The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners National Certification Board (AANPCB) also provides a valid and reliable program for entry-level nurse practitioners to recognize their education, knowledge and professional expertise, as well as a process for validation of an advanced practice nurse’s qualifications and knowledge for practice as a nurse practitioner. The AANPCB offers the FNP certification examination, which is an entry-level competency-based examination that tests clinical knowledge in family/individual across the life span (prenatal, pediatric, adolescent, adult, elderly, and frail elderly primary care). See the South College webpage for information regarding information for Professional/State licensure.

Students are advised by the Program Director for the specialty area or a faculty advisor. After meeting with an admissions representative, an advising appointment is scheduled with the Director or a faculty advisor. This can be completed in person or via telephone/virtual conferencing.  The Director/faculty advisor assists individual students in determining eligibility for admission to the nursing program. The Director/faculty advisor works with each student in developing a plan of study and serves as his/her advisor throughout the program. The Director/faculty advisor also provides additional direction and offers encouragement throughout the program of study via phone calls, e-mail messages, and/or virtual conferencing.

For a student to graduate from the Doctor of Nursing Practice program, the student must be in a good academic and professional standing, have had satisfactory progress in all quarters of the academic program, and satisfactorily complete the following:

  1. The student normally must complete the course requirements in the catalog in effect when the student enrolled. However, academic programs are subject to change at the discretion of the institution. Students who leave the college may be required to meet catalog requirements at the time of their return. Students may request Dean approval for course substitution. Deviation from any program requirements must be approved by the Chief Academic Officer.
  2. The student must earn the minimum grades designated by the program in all required courses.
  3. The student must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher for all coursework taken in the DNP program.
  4. The student must complete the Career Services exit program and all outcomes assessment exams prior to graduation.
  5. The student must abide by all college rules and regulations and settle any financial obligations prior to graduation.
  6. Programs may have additional graduation requirements that must be fulfilled.

South College reserves the right, and the student, by the act of matriculation, concedes to give South College the right to require withdrawal at any time the college deems it necessary to safeguard the standards of scholarship, conduct, and compliance with regulations, or for such other reasons deemed appropriate by South College as set forth in the South College Student Handbook and/or the South College Catalog.

Upon successful completion of all program requirements, candidates are recommended for graduation and for the conferring of the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. South College and the School of Nursing reserve the right to make necessary program changes as impacted by accreditation standards, other state or federal mandates, or need due to faculty evaluation.

If a student finds it necessary to withdraw from the nursing program, readmission into the program cannot be guaranteed. Any student wishing to apply for readmission after voluntary withdrawal must follow the current readmission policy of the School of Nursing DNP Program.

Grounds for termination from the nursing program are as follows:

  1. Insufficient academic progress or clinical performance defined as failing any two nursing courses;
  2. Nonpayment of fees;
  3. Failure to comply with rules and/or policies as written in the Nursing Student Handbook, the South College Student Handbook, and/or the South College Catalog;
  4. Falsification of application to South College or the School of Nursing;
  5. Any violation of Academic Integrity (cheating, plagiarism, sharing exams, obtaining unauthorized digital copies of exams, etc.);
  6. Unprofessional, unsafe, or unethical behavior;
  7. Failure to meet attendance requirements;
  8. Failure to maintain compliance with clinical agency requirements which prevent the student from attending clinical;

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